If you have not yet written a story related to covid 19, the time is now. At some point, we have all been quarantined or know someone who has. So, here is the quarantine prompt! We have already seen a compilation of creativity coming from the desperate boredom of being quarantined. So, with that to inspire, create your own version.
A quarantine is defined by an individual or group being required to remain in a certain location, eliminating contact with others. Generally for medical purposes, to reduce the spread of a contagious illness. This occurrence has varying intensities, from the medical version of a swat team building a plastic bubble with guarded and sanitized entrances, to an individual simply staying home.
But the idea of a quarantine may be just as effective in this prompt. The idea of being confined to a single location without change in scenery or company. This could be evident in an escape room, a maze, or prison. Even situations such as stranded on the side of the road, stranded on an island, or in hiding for whatever reason.
Prompt as an Excercise
This prompt may serve well as an exercise in developing a character. To truly know someone, we have to understand how they respond in a variety of circumstances. As an introvert, I don’t mind going a day or so without seeing another human being. I have plenty to do on my own and will happily busy myself in writing, reading, or cleaning if left alone. However, there are others who desperately need socialization on a daily basis. Where does your character fall? And what would they spend their time doing?
Another aspect that many of us have faced, is learning to get along better with people closest to us. If I were currently trapped with my whole family, adult siblings and all, I might have a few disputes to work out. What would happen if your character were trapped in a room with their enemy, best friend, or love interest, or all three? How would each character react to the situation of being trapped, and how would they respond to the reactions of the other characters?
Prompt as a Story
We already know of a few movies based on being stranded on an island. Lord of the Flies, for example, is a book about the loss of civilization in a group of stranded school boys. While the survival instinct is one aspect to explore, like in I am Legend, there may be others related to a quarantine based story. Creativity, philosophy, maybe an underdog story might rise out of a quarantine of some sort.
Isolation will always lead to addressing the need for social interaction. However, there is more to explore in the scenario. Perhaps rather than madness and social deterioration, something good blossoms from a life of close-quarters. A greater appreciation for life, relationships, and diversity, or a greater perspective overall, might be the final result.
Your Quarantine Prompt
I am always in hopes that this opens an avenue of positivity. Perhaps the end of the world plague isn’t so bleak as it seems. Maybe a socialite taking up a few months of solitude has altered the course of his or her life. Some characters may need a confrontation when backed into a corner in order to come to realizations needed to become a hero or to accomplish the task assigned to them.
In spite of all the negativity and scary things in the world, use this prompt to create something full of life. See the silver lining in the situation. How does your story solve a problem so many have been facing? Does your character turn out to be claustrophobic but great at managing it? Let me know how your quarantine prompt goes!